The Critical 'I'

Read. React. Repeat.

Monday, March 29, 2004

feed me
The first signs of '90s nostalgia (not counting Nirvana reminiscences): The return of the dreaded Tamagotchi, now with the ability to mate through infrared connection.
My pet tried to foster a relationship with a Tamagotchi Plus I assigned to my husband. Our machines became immediate friends after a few button-pushing sessions with the two machines facing each other.

My husband's pet gave mine a ball as a gift. A picture of a ball showed up on my screen that my pet proudly bounced around on its head. Meaner creatures give fecal droppings or ghosts as gifts.

I managed to nurture my spiked-hair pet to adolescence in a few days. And my husband, who has been known to spend hours on more sophisticated video games but showed little motivation to rear his Tamagotchi, parented his to about the same level despite repeated brushes with death.

But our pets never made it to marriage.
I thought the original Tamagotchi craze was interesting, but not enough to buy one myself; I was way too old for it, and it seemed more like a girl-targeted thing (as the marketing push for this new version confirms). I recall a 40-ish part-time clerical worker in an office I worked in years ago who was hooked on it. She seemed to lavish tons of attention on the little digi-kid, scrambling to fish it out of her coat pocket when it would beep every 15 minutes or so. At the same time, she had a couple of real-life little kids at home, who always seemed to be in and out of trouble at school and doing strange things like eating their own feces. I'm sure it was the kids' fault that Mom turned to her little toy for exercising her parenting skills.

Will the kids go for something so monochromatically yesterday? It's certainly more portable and less time-intensive than the modern equivalent, Neopets.